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Change of attorney delays hearing for couple accused of starving child

A couple accused of abusing a 5-year-old child returned to court Monday for a hearing, which was quickly delayed.

Hazel Jackson and her boyfriend, Dennis Rumberger, are accused of locking the boy up and starving him at their home in Jackson County.

Both are charged with attempted murder and criminal abuse for the case involving Jackson's grandson.

The court had originally appointed a public defender to represent Jackson and Rumberger.

However, that public defender recused himself Monday, saying Jackson's family had hired a private attorney.

The new attorney needs time to interview both defendants to make sure there would be no conflict if the attorney represented both of them.

Because of that, the preliminary hearing was delayed.

Rumberger claims the 5-year-old child had been drinking water from a fish tank, which made him sick.

However, police say they received a medical report showing the boy had been malnourished for several weeks.

Jackson and Rumberger are scheduled to be back in court next Monday.


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